**Meeting the Varied Geographic and Business Cycle Needs of the Industry**
DEMA Show, the annual trade-only event for the dive industry, attracts almost 10,000 diving professionals each year. DEMA Show venues are selected to create the best trade show experience, taking into account the diverse geographic, show timing and overall cost needs of Attendees and Exhibitors. Venues are selected three to five years in advance of the Show.
Show locations and timing are determined using Attendee and Exhibitor surveys as well as by researching convention center and hotel availability. DEMA Show is one of the 250 largest trade shows in the United States and as such, there are a limited number of convention facilities large enough to hold the annual event. When evaluating and selecting the convention facilities, city, and hotels, DEMA uses Board-approved criteria including:
- The city must have cultural or entertainment attractions and special event venues appealing to the diving professional. There should be a variety of restaurants and other entertainment within a 10 minute walking distance of the host hotel/convention center.
- The Show city must be a major airline destination for North American and international travelers. The city should have a substantial number of direct flights coming into the city, and be a hub for at least one major airline.
- “Blended” labor rates for the city must be within 10% of the median average as compared to the convention industry market for the previous five years.
- The convention facility must meet DEMA’s exhibit and meeting space requirements, and be in a location convenient to major hotels, the international airport and city points of interest. The minimum conventions center size is 500,000 gross square feet.
- The convention facility must include a minimum of 30 meeting rooms in the convention center, capable of holding at least 50 to 100 people while using classroom style seating.
- There must be first-class hotels convenient to the convention and exhibit facility for 10,000 attendees. Hotel facilities should accommodate a minimum of 1,200 to 1,400 rooms peak night pick up, with 4,000 minimum total room nights required within DEMA’s block. This number of hotel rooms must be within a 5-mile radius/15 minutes travel time (whichever is less) of the convention center.
“Throughout the years, DEMA has surveyed Show Attendees and Exhibitors about their preferred dates and locations for DEMA Show,” commented Tom Ingram, Executive Director of DEMA. “While the majority of survey respondents prefer the fall, the general requirement is that the Show should be held during a time of the year when there is as little direct interference with the day to day business of as many Attendees and Exhibitors as possible. And of course, DEMA must ensure that the Show takes place during a time that is conducive to traveling to feasible destination cities to conduct business. The DEMA Board and staff have taken this feedback into consideration when contracting future venues and will continue to evaluate new venues as they become available.”
Currently, DEMA Show is in a two-city rotation between Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, FL and the Las Vegas Convention Center in Las Vegas, NV. Both conventions centers are located in a major city and gateway and both cities are ranked in the top five convention cities in the United States. DEMA is actively seeking a third city for the rotation and hopes to contract with a venue that has generated great Member interest during previous years. Stay tuned for additional details in an upcoming DEMAIL and at the annual DEMA membership meeting taking place Thursday, November 5th at 8:30 a.m. at DEMA Show 2015.
DEMA Show 2015 will be held at that Orange County Convention Center, Orlando, FL from November 4-7, 2015. Additional DEMA Show dates and locations can be found online here.
For more information on DEMA Show, including the Show cities for the next few years, visit www.demashow.com.